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The GW Hatchet


The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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FRESHFARM workers ratify union agreement
By Max Porter, Contributing News Editor • February 15, 2024

Gelman permit delays leads to louder daytime work

GW’s permit allows workers to demolish the landing dock next to Gelman Library, and was delayed because the original plans didn’t fit codes. It was sent back at least three times. Hatchet File Photo by Ashley Lucas | Contributing Photo Editor.

Construction crews at Gelman Library are more than two weeks behind on one of the project’s noisest tasks, leading to more daytime disturbances for students on the lower floors.

Crews are still breaking down the building’s loading dock, which they were slated to complete by Aug. 26.

Interim University librarian Andrea Stewart said the loudest noises should cease by the end of this week, with more work shifting between 3 and 7 a.m.

“You all are hearing the worst right now,” Stewart said. She has asked for advanced notice of noisy work so the library can alert students via Twitter.

The permit process took multiple revisions, creating the delay, Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs spokesman Helder Gil said.

“The building plans as submitted simply did not meet building code,” Gil said.

The original permit was sent back and forth “at least three times” for not meeting structure and fire codes, Gil said, which required the form to be picked up and completely resubmitted each time. He said the application was initially received on April 24.

“We did our best, we did everything we could do,” Aria Varasteh, Gelman student liaison, said of staff efforts to prevent the permit’s delay.

Gelman officials said earlier this year that loud work would occur between 3 a.m. and 7 a.m.

Christy Zink, director of the GW Writing Center,  located on the first floor, said students and tutors have complained that the noise level affects tutoring sessions, but that her office has been “weathering” the distraction.

“I’ve talked openly to the tutors about the possibility for disruption, asking them to keep in mind that the construction means a bigger, brighter Writing Center and learning commons space for all of us on the new first floors,” Zink said.

Anne Ward, the library’s director of communications, also asked students to think long-term when irritated with construction noise.

“We’re just that hoping students will remember that this is what they wanted and we’re doing our best to make it happen with as few interruptions and disruptions and as we can,” Ward said.

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